Shooting leads to a fatal crash
Cindy Comeaux had just paid taxes on her car to get it registered Wednesday and was on her way back home to Magna when a Honda Civic crossed into her lane on 4100 South in West Valley City.
At the wheel of the Civic was an unconscious 17-year-old boy who had just been shot.
Comeaux tried to swerve, but there was nowhere for her to go.
The Civic kept coming, crashing head-on into her car.
"I'm thankful I'm not dead," said Comeaux, 48, who suffered a broken foot and arm and was banged up a bit.
Comeaux had just been caught up in a chain of events spurred by what police said was most likely a gang-related slaying. But she held no ill will toward the driver of the Civic, who died Wednesday night at University Hospital.
"I just feel bad about the kid that passed away," Comeaux said. "I feel terrible. . . . He was 17 years old."
Moments before Comeaux happened into the collision, there was a more intentional confrontation. The Civic and a green Dodge Neon were speeding east down 4100 South about 5:15 p.m. A passenger in the Neon stuck his arm out of the vehicle and fired about three or four shots at the Civic near 3080 West, West Valley City police Lt. Kelly Rushton said.
The driver of the Civic was struck by the gunfire, though it was unclear how many times. He lost consciousness, and his vehicle started to drift. It clipped two vehicles and went into the westbound lanes, where it collided with Comeaux's car.
Later Wednesday night, police found the Neon in West Val- ley City and, at 10:30 p.m., were interviewing the driver of the car. Officers were still searching late Wednesday for the shooter.
Rushton said the shooting was most likely gang related. The driver of the Civic, whose name was not released, had some gang ties in the past, he said.
Comeaux was injured a month to the day before her oldest son's impending wedding. She will still take part in the ceremony at Thanksgiving Point but will have her left arm and right leg in casts.
"I'm alive, so that's good," Comeaux said.
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